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10.04.2005    |    "all Israel will be saved"
The full quotation from Romans 11:
26And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,

"The Deliverer will come from Zion,
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob";
27"and this will be my covenant with them
when I take away their sins."
As usual, Paul cites the Scripture extant in his day: the Hebrew Scriptures, in this instance the prophet Isaiah 59:20-21, with a little Jeremiah 31:33-34 thrown in.

Every Christian should accept the prophecy that the "Deliverer will come from Zion." Jesus, after all, was from Abraham and David by the flesh. The question is, was salvation given to "all Israel" in the simple English meaning of "all," or is it necessarily more limited and conditional?

My take is the latter. "All Israel will be saved" is immediately limited earlier in Romans 11:
4But what is God's reply to him? "I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal." 5So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.
A remnant, chosen by grace. Yet this salvation is also conditional. It is conditioned by the words that immediately preceed "All Israel will be saved." From Romans 11:25: "a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in."

Chosen by grace; Jew and Gentile. Replacing those of Israel whose hearts had been hardened, and who were not chosen by God's grace. The truly difficult thing for those who wish that God would save everyone is that universal salvation can not be supported by Scripture. Those unsaved, Jew and Gentile, are visible in the world today, as they worship our modern version of the golden calf.

We are told not to judge, lest we be judged. God will surely do this, and we may be surprised at the results. And it is not possible for us to know what is in the hearts of our brothers and sisters; to know whether God's grace has started them down the narrow path. Yet it is hard to avoid drawing conclusions from outward appearances.

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About this site and the author

Welcome. My name is John Luke Rich, (very) struggling Christian. The focus here is Christianity in its many varieties, its fussing and feuding, how it impacts our lives and our society, with detours to consider it with other faiths (or lack thereof).

Call this blog my way of evangelizing on the internet.

Putting it differently, we're only here on this earth a short time. It's the rest of eternity that we should be most concerned about. Call it the care and feeding of our souls.

I was born Jewish, and born again in Christ Jesus over thirty years ago. First as a Roman Catholic; now a Calvinist by persuasion and a Baptist by denomination. But I'm hardly a poster boy for doctrinal rigidity.

I believe that Scripture is the rock on which all Christian churches must stand -- or sink if they are not so grounded. I believe that we are saved by faith, but hardly in a vacuum. That faith is a gift from God, through no agency on our part -- although we sometimes turn a deaf ear and choose to ignore God's knocking on the door.

To be Christian is to evangelize. Those who think it not their part to evangelize perhaps haven't truly understood what our Lord told us in Matthew 28. We must preach the Gospel as best we are able. Using words if necessary.

Though my faith waxes and wanes, it never seems to go away. Sometimes I wish it would, to give me some peace of mind. But then, Jesus never said that walking with Him was going to be easy...

Final note: I also blog as Jack Rich on cultural, political and other things over at Wrong Side of the Tracks

Thanks for stopping by.